"This is Faithless reinvigorated and refreshed for the new generation" - hmv.com talks to Faithless
Having announced their reunion earlier this summer, dance titans Faithless are celebrating their 20-year anniversary with Faithless 2.0 a new 'Greatest Hits' collection and remix album featuring the likes of Aviici, Tiesto and Eric Prydz putting new spins on many of the band's classic tunes. It's out now and you can preview and purchase the collection on the right-hand side of the page.
To celebrate the release we chatted to Faithless mainstay Ayalah Bentovim, a.k.a Sister Bliss, about reuniting, putting together Faithless 2.0 and their plans for the future...
How are you enjoying life back together as Faithless?
"We have been having a really great time - it's been a pleasure and an honour to play live again, and truly humbling in this rather fickle era to have been welcomed so warmly by so many across the globe."
How have the shows been so far?
"We have had the most incredible summer - the shows have been fantastically well received and the band feels as fresh and as vital as ever - in case you didn't catch us playing, you can get a little taste from our new video of 'Insomnia 2.0' which includes footage of our live show at the award- winning Exit Festival. It was truly off the hook- as was every single festival we played!"
When did you decide that you’d be reuniting?
"I realised a while ago (while in the bath of all places!) that it would be our 20th anniversary this year, and 10 years since the release of our Greatest Hits album 'Forever Faithless' and wanted to commemorate that with a new release, and so put it to Maxi that we could do some shows to support that - especially as people just haven't stopped asking when we will tour again since we paused in 2011. So the idea came together to ask the biggest remixers to remix the biggest hits."
In the years you’ve been away dance music has really exploded, particularly in America, has it been odd being away while all this has been going on?
"Well, we haven't been completely 'away' as such - we still make music, I still DJ around the globe and also have a radio show and a dance music record label "Junkdog, a platform for new music & upcoming talent that I'm passionate about, so I keep my hand in."
"I always knew dance music was a force to be reckoned with, and that it was hugely popular internationally, having toured the globe as an artist and as a DJ - it just took a while for the U.S to catch up and for it to become the soundtrack for a new generation, and welcomed at mainstream radio!"
Did it feel a bit like acts like yourselves and The Chemical Brothers started that process?
"We had already been through that process in the mid 90's - UK radio was pretty hostile to dance music up until that time - even though we knew we had a strong club hit on our hands, we were told in no uncertain terms that 'Insomnia' had no chorus and no hook and wasn't going to get played on UK radio. It wasn't until the following year and a half after its initial release that there was a radical change in music policy and radio finally took notice of the huge dance music scene and started to support it."
Where did the idea for Faithless 2.0 come from?
"The idea is that its a play on the word '20' of our 20 years anniversary - the 2.0 feels like a 're-boot' - the idea that although we are looking back at our past body of work, we are of the future as well - this is Faithless reinvigorated and refreshed for the new generation!"
How did you go about selecting the DJs for the album?
"On a musical level we wanted to work with artists who we thought could best bring their vision to the tracks, and we also approached people we know are Faithless fans, or we have had a relationship with during our journey in the world of dance. For example, Artists like Tiesto have been involved with Faithless since the early days, and he requested the vocals for God is a DJ for a NYE set a couple of years back, so we knew he had a special connection to the track."
"A few years back, I played a DJ show in Stockholm and the promoter happened to be a then 17 year old Avicii's manager, who asked us if he could do a remix for us - we were between albums at the time! Alongside the established big names, we also wanted to showcase lesser known artists whose music we love and give them a bigger platform - Purple Disco Machine, Until the Ribbon Breaks, Claptone, High Contrast and Autograf amongst others - are some great producers involved in the project too."
Are you working on any new material? Is a new Faithless album in the offing?
"Yes we are working on new material, and some fantastic collaborations- but we will just have to see where it goes …watch this space!"
What can fans expect from the live shows you’ve got coming up in the autumn?
"An intoxicating feast of sound, light, lasers and love!"
Faithless's new collection Faithless 2.0 is out now.